Friday, March 06, 2009

The New of the New

If one looks at the real and virtual "stuff" we produce and consume, one of the big state changes comes from new economies of scale mediated by networked information.

Adoption rates for all sorts of things begin more and more to look like vertical lines (e.g., faster broadband versus slower) and better product architectures afford no small degree of modularity and component based systems.

What used to be called information float has become, to a great extent, less of a factor because federations of "smart friends and strangers" can rapidly vet vapor and mojo.

This new "component based and interoperable" lot of hardware, software, bio, and info means that the friction of creation and status quo form less of a barrier than before. This is the kind of environment that welcomes punctuated equalibria (evolution by jerks, as they say!) and disintermediation.

Removing (or mitigating) other frictional issues such as health care in turn improves the formation of new, and I assert, generally smaller organizations. From personal experience, I can say that the 1990s recession spawned a good number of high quality companies and think tanks.

With the provisioning of fractional services (payroll, HR, storage, webservers...) that reflect almost atomistic (and often "free") marginal costs compared to the big box running at 1% capacity, the formula for the production function begins to take rational, versus whole number or integer, steps. Again, with health care, the exploitation of the quaint statistic of large numbers in a common pool.... well, you do the math.

Trust in God but lock your car... I do believe that opportunities will be exploited if only from the fatigue of status quo and the inertia of the known.

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